Wednesday, May 16, 2007

March for Life banner issue continues...

I just wanted to address BigCityLib's post on the March for Life banner making the MSM.

March For Life Scandal Erupts; Campaign Life Organizers Respond
But not to the major newspapers, at least as far as I can tell, because the folks at the Edmonton Sun say:

Rally organizers, the Campaign Life Coalition, could not be reached for comment.

The organizers maybe couldn't be reached. It's the Ottawa office that does the bulk of the organizing.

Instead, my favorite SoCon Suzanne at Big Blue Wave (whose Youttube video of the march launched the whole controversy) pulls the scoop from 570 News:

However, Jim Hughes, head of Campaign Life Coalition, said the annual protest against abortion has never received federal funding and that the government was in no way involved in this year's event.

Hughes couldn't say how the Canada logo made its way onto the banner, likely created by a volunteer. But he said the banner has been used for the past five years without a problem.

...which last statement causes Suzanne to write:

Only now, with a Conservative government in power, did someone notice. What a coinkedink.

That last word is not a typo. I am assuming it is some kind of SoCon approved foul-language substitute.

LOL. No, "coinkedink" is a play on the spelling of "coincidence", pronounced "CO-INK-EE-DINK". It's not a swear word.

In any case, Suzanne, the fact that problems arose now is probably more a result of the fact that march attendees were encouraged to post youtube videos of their experience.

Whereas last year, there were journalists filming the March, and had the same banner in the same view. My pictures made the rounds last year. But no journalist or politician who happened on the March found it newsworthy, or in years past.

Sounds like a made-up scandal to me.

Also, five years seems a long time for organizers to remain ignorant of what seems a pretty basic feature of Canadian copyright law.

Laws on wordmarks are not basic features of the law. Many people don't know these points. The banner was in plain view of thousands of people, from various political backgrounds, probably a few lawyers, and no one thought twice about it.

Meanwhile, Mr. Hughes seems to have been partaking of the holy vodka bottle, because his estimates of the crowd size at last Thursday's March For Life are about double those of anyone else at the event.

They are not estimates. Jim Hughes at every March for Life stands at corner with a clicker and counts each person. I believe there are others to help him as well.

While Mr. Hughes produced a figure of 7,000, one police officer put the number at about half that, and CBC National News estimated a crowd of 1,500.

The crowd is different sizes at different times. If you come to the March at 11:30, when many buses and people have not arrived, then it could be smaller. If you count at 1:30, when the March is about to start, it's much bigger.

1,500? That means March for Life drew fewer souls than the "Save the Slime-Mold" protest I once attended, or the "Hop of the One-Legged Lesbians".

And the Canadian media would probably rather cover that than this March which concerns an issue that is of vital importance to millions of Canadians.

In the comments, April Reign writes:

Suzanne would be incorrect in her assumption that this has to do with the Conservative government.

It has to do with wanting to embarrass the government.

This pilfering has been noticed in other years also, in fact there is a babble thread on it from 2005.

Which many had forgotten until Hailey from Free Dominion reminded her of this. People had blogs last year, and in 2005, I didn't see any note of it then.

What "other years". Just one year?

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